Graphite producer Tirupati Graphite has announced that its research centre, which is focused on graphene manufacturing, graphene applications development and minerals processing technology development, has secured its first commercial contract.
The contract involves Tirupati Graphene and Mintech Research Centre providing mineral processing technology development services to UK-registered mining company Optiva Resources.
Optiva wants to have mineral processing technology solutions developed for the vanadium, titanium and magnetite (VTM) deposits at its Marela project, in Guinea.
The research centre will conduct a technical feasibility study for developing a process to extract saleable concentrate from VTM deposits for an upfront fee.
Upon successful development of a process, Tirupati will be entitled to a 5% equity stake in Optiva, with an additional right to subscribe for a further 5% share in warrants.
After a lab scale process has been successfully developed, the parties will further cooperate on pilot scale studies, as well as the engineering and design of a commercial operation.
The contract represents the first of many mineral processing technology development contracts that Tirupati expects to engage in as it is involved in ongoing discussions with various prospective clients.
Tirupati CEO Shishir Poddar says this engagement with Optiva represents another start of first revenues from the third business unit of the company − the other two are already revenue generating, namely the Sahamamy and Vatomina natural flake graphite development projects in Madagascar and the Patalganga and Specialty Graphite projects in India.
“While we continue to progress on the graphene developments, the start of revenue generation from our Mintech centre of excellence at the research centre aligns with our strategy of obtaining early-stage diversified and independent revenue streams across our three business units.
“We are confident that with our mineral processing expertise and innovative approach, we will reach a solution for Optiva to unlock the full potential of the VTM deposits in Marela.”